Fall is approaching soon, and people seem to get in the mind set that the season is over. Nothing could be further from the truth. Fall flowers are some of the coolest flowers to plant. The colors are awesome and the plants tend to be easier to start and take care of because the weather isn't so hot. We have our violas, mums, and asters in stock and will soon have pansies and two of my personal favorites cabbage and kale. Not to mention it's still a great time to plant trees, shrubs, perennials and annuals to freshen up your pots and beds.
This month's bug is the earwig. The reason why I have chosen earwigs for this month bug is because I have had a couple of people come into nursery saying that they went to bed with a nice healthy plant and then woke up with a plant that had been eaten almost completely. The next night the pattern repeated itself. I was stumped, then a lady came in and we were talking on how she had the same problem and it was earwigs.
Earwigs eat at night, they like decomposing plants, dead insects, and live plants. During the day they hide out under organic material, sidewalks and rocks. They like it dark and damp. To get rid of them you will want to use Diatomaceous Earth. Another product that will take care of the earwigs and most other insects is Eight. It is a spray that is so safe to use you can spray one day and harvest the next. You now know that you weren't imagining your plants disappearing.
We are at the beginning of the end, not even close, fall is one of our favorite times of the year. Fall is full of color: maples, aspens, burning bushes. What about flower color? We are at the beginning of fall flowers: perennials like plumbago, mums, asters, and annuals like violas, pansies and cabbage not to mention bulbs will be coming in soon.
Pansies and violas give off a lot of color and, if they get enough water during the winter they will come back in the spring. Yes, that is right they will give us color when we are at our wicks end with winter. Plant them with bulbs and kabam you have a winning combination.
Fall is a good time to plant other perennials, shrubs and trees, because they don't have to deal with the heat stress and they do get a little time to get established before they go dormant. You can come by the store for a winter survival guide. This guide will tell you how to: water, fertilize, and spray for bugs and fungi that winter over.
This can be a really tricky time to water. Just around the corner we may start getting cooler temps that means that your plants don't need as much water. In just a blink of an eye the temperatures can turn hot again which you guessed it, your plants need more water.
What does that mean for you? You need to be very observant of what your plants are wanting. If you are not sure don't be afraid to dig around a little bit to see what is going on in the soil. For hanging pots check the weight of the pots. When the pot is well watered it heavy, when it is drying out it is really light.
What To Do
Time to tuck some perennials away. If you have perennials that are not looking good don't be afraid to cut them back. You still need to water them, they will regrow from the ground after you trim them up.
It is also time to watch those vegetables. Baderville froze a week or two ago, so you know that we can freeze anytime. Make sure that you have a plan so that you can extend your season as long as you can (wall-o-waters, frost cloth, rolling pots into garage).
Make sure you get out and enjoy your garden and don't forget to cut some flowers and bring them into the house. We have a hand out in the store for cut flowers so come on into the store for one.
It's time to replace some of your annuals if they are starting to get a little ratty. Replace them with mums, asters, pansies, and violas. We will also have cabbage and kale coming next week. These are a great fall addition to any garden. They come in pink, purple and white and the color gets brighter with the cooler temperatures. Try some in a pot in or your flower bed.